Washing Away the Stream

Sharp-eyed viewers will notice the link to my uStream account is gone. This is actually kind of a sign of how badly neglected this place is, since I had been using Twitch/Justin.tv to stream for the past several months.

But I decided earlier today that I was done. Done with streaming. Done with watching streams. And done, as much as I can be (The fact that Mrs. Emptyeye really likes streaming LEGO games means I pretty much can’t completely stop), with appearing on other people’s streams.

There are a couple reasons for this. Part of it is related to me and “how I am”. I have an addictive personality. When I go into something, I go into it full bore, to the detriment of pretty much everything else. This happens until I get bored with it–this entire site is a monument to failed ideas–or my neuroses kick in and I just give up.

See, all my life, I was academically gifted. School–or more accurately, the scholarly parts of school–came easy to me. I was always among the best in my class. And so when it comes to anything else–music, Dance Dance Revolution, running, whatever–I get really into something, almost addicted to it, until I immerse myself into the top tiers of whatever community is associated with that thing, realize “I’ll never be that good, what’s the point?”, and give up. Looking back, it’s amazing I stuck with the DDR as long as I did, and was enthusiastic about Rock band for long enough to win Connecticon‘s Best Vocalist Award three times running, and basically ran the fourth tournament.

And the thing is that this streaming, or more specifically, the watching of streaming, is a passive activity. Even when I was immersed in video games as a kid, as opposed to actually working on social skills (Skills which would have helped me in high school and college), at least I was actively participating in them, manipulating them. With the stream watching, I’m just sinking my time away, time that could be spent coming up with more projects that I’ll never finish (Or, more optimistically, more short stories that I’ll submit to people).

The third piece was the straw that broke the camel’s back, so to speak. Frankly, every streaming service out there is crap. Justin/Twitch is generally regarded as the best one. It’s what SDA will be using in their upcoming marathon. And even that has all sorts of problems. For one, the chat likes to randomly take forever to load, or not load at all (This, unlike my issues with Steam, is not exclusive to me–it seems like at least once a week, someone will say “Oh thank god, chat finally loaded after a half hour”). For another, the chat’s flood control is extremely overzealous; typing even two lines in close enough succession can be enough to trigger it. Finally, Justin.tv and Twitch.tv are two sites, with Twitch basically being the “gaming arm” of Justin. Creating a Justin account and setting it to “video games” will redirect your viewers to Twitch.tv/yourstream when they access the Justin URL. Only the settings on one don’t carry over to the other–you have to set the options on both sides, especially as regards the “censor common banned words” option (Which has some bizarre choices, like “Link” and “Mother”).

And that’s the best option out there. The rest are even worse. UStream had a phase for awhile where it seemed like every move they made was designed to hemorrhage viewers toward Justin.tv–the silly “Chat from the bottom up” thing was especially boneheaded. Yet somehow, the streaming community as a whole just accepts this as the status quo. “Terrible” is fine, because it’s less bad than all the alternatives.

Well, no more. I’m not being an accomplice to this state of events. I’m not broadcasting on my own. I’m not watching other streams. I’m aware of the hypocrisy of continuing to show up on my wife’s stream, but at least same, I don’t want to punish her for my own, admittedly, not entirely rational crusade against the state of things. But other than that, I’m done, as much as possible.


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  1. […] Done Quick 2012, I’ve taken to streaming stuff on Twitch TV. Yes, I know I previously said that I was done with streaming. The post title says […]

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